Over-Exercise and the Heart

RunningHeartWe all know that exercise is good for body, mind, and spirit, but I have been wondering whether too much of a good thing can be bad. You might question why I wonder about that. Well, lately I might be exercising too much. 

Every day (without fail) I power walk about a mile and a half around the hilly streets in my neighborhood. The overall goal is to get it done as quickly as possible. For more than a week recently, I have even done my daily “rounds” holding an umbrella against the rain. I also participate in one hour sessions of Heart Fit cardio/strength exercise twice a week and yoga once a week. It has been adding up lately, especially since I have added daily hours of leaf raking, yard mowing, and hedge trimming, too.

I ache. My body is complaining and my spirit is weary. Today, I checked online and it is true that too much exercise can be harmful. It can damage the heart and become a contributing cause of atrial fibrillation. Scientific studies have determined how much exercise is too much and most cardiologists agree that endurance athletes can develop heart disease from years of strenuous exercise.

I don’t qualify as an endurance athlete, but I have been physically overdoing it for a while. For many years, I have heard it’s good to take a day off from strenuous exercise to give the body some rest and recovery time. I think I will do that for a while. Perhaps my achy muscles and fading spirit will benefit from the rest. Please let me know if you think you have ever over-exercised.

RedHeartClosingSymbol Susan

2 thoughts on “Over-Exercise and the Heart

  1. Victoria November 14, 2015 / 11:28 pm

    Wow, I sure didn’t know that! It does answer a question for me, though…lately I have been walking a lot because I am taking the bus everywhere and have started a volunteer job at the local hospital. But I have noticed the past 3 days that, when at rest, I am getting brief heart palpitations.

    Since I am down to one cup of coffee or less per day, I wonder if I upped my exercise too much, too quickly. I just got a physical and my heart was listened to, and the PA said it was fine, so I am not worried.

    So, yeah – I think maybe I have overdone it a bit, too.

    Good post, as usual!


  2. SusanU November 16, 2015 / 7:16 am

    Thanks for sharing, Victoria. We have so much to learn from each other.


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